A TASTE OF CHAMPAGNE - SHORT BARGE CRUISE

Whether you only have a few days available, re on a limited budget or are struggling to persuade your travel companions that barge cruising is for them (they’ll become converts in no time!) – a mini-cruise is the perfect introduction to both the fabulous Champagne region and canal barging.

Join us for the day and as well as enjoying a relaxing morning cruising along the canal, you’ll learn how Champagne is made during a visit to the cellars of a world famous champagne house.

Or if you have a little longer, by choosing the 2 day option you’ll stay aboard overnight, enjoy a gourmet dinner at a Michelin starred restaurant and spend some time exploring the vineyards that make this region world-famous.

One day barge cruise

What's included

Price

€625 per person

Pick-up / Drop-off

Pick-up: Reims, either at train station or your hotel,

between 9am and 10am

Drop-off: Reims, either at train station or your hotel,

approximately 6pm

Morning

We’ll meet you in Reims between 9am and 10am (either at the train station or your hotel) and drive you to where the barge is moored.

After a brief welcome from the Captain and crew, we’ll start our cruise along the meandering and picturesque canal.  Travelling at around 3 miles per hour (6km/h) Serenity is in no hurry, giving you the opportunity to truly get away from it all and enjoy the beautiful surroundings.  Built in the 19th century to transport wine and other goods to Paris, the canal passes through rolling countryside and charming villages.

As we cruise you’ll enjoy a tasting of three different Grand Cru champagnes from artisan producers.  Accompanied by canapes, your host will introduce each champagne, which have been carefully selected to demonstrate the different styles of champagne.

Lunch is your opportunity to sample local products including Reims ham, regional cheeses and pâtes, accompanied by creative salads and tasty fresh bread.

Afternoon

Once the barge is moored, your Captain will take you to visit Champagne Pommery.  Founded in 1836, today this is a world-famous brand, producing between 5 and 6 million bottles of champagne each year, which you’ll get to taste at the end of your visit.

You’ll tour the atmospheric chalk cellars, first dug by the Romans and discover the secrets of how champagne is created using the traditional ‘Méthode Champenoise”.  Decorated with historic and modern art, today millions of bottles lie sleeping in these cellars and you’ll hear the fascinating stories this place has witnessed – from the charismatic Madame Pommery who established the brand against the odds, through to the citizens of Reims who lived in the cellars whilst the city was bombarded in WW1.

We’ll then take a drive to discover the vineyards and enjoy a tasting with the winemaker at a family-run champagne house.  Depending on your onward travel plans (ie. what tile your train departs back to Paris or if you staying in Reims for the night) we can extend our tour to include a stroll in one of our favourite vineyard villages and a scenic viewpoint.

We will drop you off in Reims at the end of your tour and if you have any extra time in the city we’ll be happy to offer shopping, sightseeing or dining tips.

* NB. Depending on availability, if you prefer we can swap the visit to Pommery for a tour of another iconic champagne house, eg. Veuve Clicquot, Tattinger or Moet & Chandon – just let us know your preference when you book.

Two day barge cruise

What's included

Price

€1,250 per person

Pick-up / Drop-off

Pick-up: Reims, either at train station or your hotel,

between 9am and 10am

Drop-off: Reims, either at train station or your hotel,

approximately 5pm

Day 1 - Morning

We’ll meet you in Reims between 9am and 10am (either at the train station or your hotel) and drive you to where the barge is moored.

After a brief welcome from the Captain and crew, we’ll start our cruise along the meandering and picturesque canal.  Travelling at around 3 miles per hour (6km/h) Serenity is in no hurry, giving you the opportunity to truly get away from it all and enjoy the beautiful surroundings.  Built in the 19th century to transport wine and other goods to Paris, the canal passes through rolling countryside and charming villages.

As we cruise you’ll enjoy a tasting of three different Grand Cru champagnes from artisan producers.  Accompanied by canapes, your host will introduce each champagne, which have been carefully selected to demonstrate the different styles of champagne.

Lunch is your opportunity to sample local products including Reims ham, regional cheeses and pâtes, accompanied by creative salads and tasty fresh bread.  Served platter style it’s a relaxed affair, perfect for savouring on the sundeck with a glass of chilled wine.

Day 1 -Afternoon

After lunch we head out into the vineyards.  On our way to a family run winery, we’ll make stops in a charming village, ata panoramic viewpoint and take a brief walk among the vines.

Our destination for the afternoon is a family run champagne house – with over 3000 across the region these are the lifeblood of the wine industry here.  These small growers typically sell a proportion of the precious grape harvest to the large houses and also create their own cuvees as well.

Often passed down through several generations, you’ll be met by one of the family team who will show you around their cellars and vat room.  During the tour you’ll learn how they create the traditional “Méthode Champenoise”.  To end the visit you’ll enjoy a tutored tasting of a range of their fabulous champagnes.

Day 1 - Evening

Once we are back at the barge, there is time to relax with an aperitif before we head out to dinner.

This evening is a gastronomic treat with dinner at a Michelin starred restaurant.  Included in your cruise price is the 3 course set menu.  Your driver will take you to the restaurant and be waiting to bring you back.  

Back on board, why not end your day with a nightcap on deck or a soak in the jacuzzi.

Day 2 - Morning

A feast of fresh croissants, gorgeous pastries, baguette, fresh fruits, yogurts and cereal awaits you this morning as the barge starts to cruise along the canal.

Again as the barge cruises you have the opportunity to relax on deck and soak in the scenery or, if you want, “join the crew” and help with the ropes or try your hand at steering the barge.

Day 2 - Afternoon

After lunch aboard, your Captain will take you to visit Champagne Pommery.  Founded in 1836, today this is a world-famous brand, producing between 5 and 6 million bottles of champagne each year, which you’ll get to taste at the end of your visit.

You’ll tour the atmospheric chalk cellars, first dug by the Romans and discover the secrets of how champagne is created using the traditional ‘Méthode Champenoise”.  Decorated with historic and modern art, today millions of bottles lie sleeping in these cellars and you’ll hear the fascinating stories this place has witnessed – from the charismatic Madame Pommery who established the brand against the odds, through to the citizens of Reims who lived in the cellars whilst the city was bombarded in WW1.

Before you depart, there’s just time to discover the sparkling city of Reims.  Settled since Roman times, Reims is awash with history and we’ll visit the towering gothic cathedral, where the kings of France were traditionally crowned.  Depending on the tile of your train back to Paris there may also be time for souvenir shopping and a stop at a patisserie.

* NB. Depending on availability, if you prefer we can swap the visit to Pommery for a tour of another iconic champagne house, eg. Veuve Clicquot, Tattinger or Moet & Chandon – just let us know your preference when you book.

How to book your short cruise

Serenity cruises from April to October, but we don’t release available dates for short cruises until March each year.

If you are planning further ahead get in touch at serenitybarge@gmail.com or by phone on +33 6 20 05 42 81 and we’ll email you as soon as we release the dates.